Freelance Resume: How to List Freelance Work on Your CV

F

For people who hold down a 9-5 job, creating a CV is a fairly straightforward process. However, if you’ve been freelancing for a while, you may start to despair at how to list the multiple projects and jobs you’ve taken on in a manageable order to impress future employers. Learn how to write freelance experience in a resume!

Many freelancers are frequently looking for new work, and your CV, therefore, needs to be constantly up-to-date and an excellent showcase of your skills and experience as a freelancer.

If you’ve been struggling to list your freelance work in your resume in a way that truly showcases what you can do, follow our tips here to really get your CV in shape:

Do you need a freelance resume?

If you have been freelancing alongside a full-time job, you may be tempted to leave your freelance work out of your resume altogether. 

However, you should only do this if you have ​not​ gained additional skills and experience in your role as a freelancer. If you have widened your skillset by freelancing, you may be shutting the door to potential opportunities by not letting employers know that via your CV.  Freelancing does count as work experience!

On the other hand, if you have only been freelancing as your main source of income, you should definitely be listing this work on your CV. Not listing your freelance projects will look like an employment gap on your CV, which never looks good to potential employers. 

Whether you’re staying in the freelance world long-term or are now looking to get back into the workforce, it is always beneficial to show potential employers what you have been doing up to this point.

Hint: Create multiple resumes

Many freelancers do more than just one specific type of freelance work. For example, you may have experience in both web development and web design.

In these cases, it may be worthwhile to create multiple CVs tailored towards the type of work you are applying for, e.g. development work, or design work.

Each CV should highlight your most significant experience in this niche and be tailored toward the type of employer to whom you are sending your CV.

You can then include any other experience as a freelancer, but be sure to look more experienced and more suitable for the specific role you are applying for rather than appearing to be a little all over the place with your work.

Creating multiple resumes is a time-consuming process, but it can really pay off if you want to target different freelance niches and boost your chances of success in each field.

Portfolio Dragos Muntean

How to list your freelance work on your resume

There are a few different ways you can effectively list your freelance work on your resume, and this is often dependent on your previous experience and how long you have been freelancing.

A few options you might like to consider:

#1 Chronologically

It is always a good idea to list your most recent experience at the top of your ‘Work’ section on your resume. You should include the company, the dates you worked for them, and a brief outline of your role and the responsibilities you had.

A chronological CV will list your experience in reverse-chronological order (from most recent to oldest). Formatting your CV this way is great if you have been working as a freelancer for several years and have held more long-term client contracts in a particular skill rather than picking up one-off projects here and there and for multiple types of work.

An example of a freelancer resume adding experience chronologically could look like this:

Company XYZ, London, UK
Senior Project Manager IT Jan 2019 to Jan 2020
Managed the full lifecycle of an e-commerce enabling project, reporting to the program manager including stakeholder management. Cost management and change management using Clarity and MS-Project. Harnessed PMP methodologies while also overseeing product evaluations.

Company 2, Munich, Germany
Project ManagerMay 2019 – Nov 2019
Delivered International data center consolidation and relocation. Deployed new consulting packages for performance on z/OS z/series. Offered training courses in English and Dutch for end customers.

#2 Skillset

Less experienced freelancers may prefer to format their resume according to skillset. This is also applicable if you have done a lot of different types of freelance work such as social media, SEO, copywriting, web design, etc. 

If you list your freelance work according to skill, your resume might look something like the example below:

Social Media
List your freelance experience in social media, including the client name, dates worked, and key responsibilities.

Copywriting
List your experience, client name, dates worked, responsibilities, and link to work if relevant.

Keyword research
List your experience, client name, dates worked, responsibilities, and link to work if relevant.

If your freelance work is a little all over the place with projects showcasing a range of skills, ordering your resume this way will showcase all of your experience as a freelancer without confusing potential employers as to what you can actually offer as a freelancer.

#3 Combination

Finally, it can be a good idea to list your freelance work as a combination of work experience and skills.

In this case, you would list your work experience in reverse-chronological order (most recent first), and then include a separate ‘Skills’ section to highlight other types of work you have done in the past.

This is probably the most common, but it is all dependent on your resume’s specific needs.

Tips on how to add freelance work to resume

Tips for creating a killer CV as a freelancer

#1 Be ruthless 

Many freelancers, when first starting out, will take on lower-paying jobs in order to get a foot on the ladder. When listing your freelance work on your CV, it’s important to be ruthless and exclude any work that does not really showcase your skills as a freelancer.

This also applies to work you may have done at the beginning for free for family or friends. While this kind of work is great to put in your portfolio and on your resume when you are a new freelancer, you may want to remove this work from your CV once you have paying clients to replace it.

#2 Add metrics to prove your accomplishments

Add figures and percentages to show the great work you did for a particular client or on a particular period (if you can’t disclose any details about that particular client because you signed an NDA).

Positive metrics are always a good thing to add to your resume and that can get you hired.

An example for a writer freelance resume:

Oct, 2019 – Dec, 2019Freelancer copywriter and outreach specialist (client protected by NDA)

– Created a content plan and worked on 100+ articles that grew traffic by 40% from 250K to 350K pageviews/month.
– Ranked 50 pieces on positions 1 to 4 in Google
– Gained 60+ backlinks from relevant blogs and news sites

Or an example of a more IT-focused role:

Oct, 2019 – Dec, 2019Freelance IT manager, XYD Consulting

– Managed an IT project with budgets of $50,000 each
– Created customized software that automated the requirement-tracking for 100 programs
– Implemented Scrum methodology that saved 10 meeting hours per week per engineer
– Lead a team of 10 engineers
– All implementations earn additional $10,000 / month

#3 Show your work

As a freelancer, your work must speak for itself. Always include a link to your portfolio in your resume, directing potential employers to a showcase of your best work. 

While having an excellent CV is important, having a strong portfolio that demonstrates your skills as a freelance should be your top priority when trying to find more work, as clients will directly see what you have done.

The CV is the icing of the cake!

Freelance Resume Example Listing Freelance work

With all of the information we’ve seen, let’s see how a complete freelancer resume could look like.

This is an example that you could use and adapt to your particular freelance work experience:

Freelance experience in CV – Download template in Word

Freelance resume example preview

Other articles you might like:

Yasmin Purnell

Yasmin Purnell is a content creator at freelancermap.com. She has a great deal of experience working as a freelance copywriter and has enjoyed the Digital Nomad lifestyle. She is in charge of bringing you amazing freelancing tips and experiences that will help you boost your freelance business.

By Yasmin Purnell

Recent Posts